phoenix food trucksPHOENIX, AZ – Henry Uhrik sat at a picnic table, nibbling on a coconut Italian ice he bought from a food truck parked at downtown’s Phoenix Public Market.

“I’m here every Wednesday,” he said. “I volunteer at the Phoenix Art Museum, and I drive down here between shifts.”

Uhrik, a senior at the Arizona School for the Arts, buys from all of the trucks that set up at Central Avenue and Pierce Street.

Uhrik may find options in new locations if food-truck proponents can work out some flexibility with the city. Discussions are under way to allow the trucks to park in vacant lots until developers build on the land.

The food-truck industry in metro Phoenix has captured the attention of Mayor Greg Stanton, who said, “They’re a lot of fun and very creative. They add vibrancy and zest to the community. … I enjoy their food.”

He said he wants to create more opportunities for food trucks throughout the city.

“We’re looking at a variety of ways we can support food trucks and the food-truck culture,” he said.

Stanton said he wants to strike a balance, taking advantage of the fun and vibrancy spawned by the food-truck culture while supporting brick-and-mortar businesses.

Brad Moore is chairman of the Phoenix Street Food Coalition, a trade organization whose website lists 48 members, a list that is growing.

Moore is working with the Mayor’s Sustainability Advisory Committee to boost activity in the Roosevelt area on the increasingly popular Food Truck Friday, which runs from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Phoenix Public Market. Trucks also show up at the farmers market on Wednesday evening from 4 to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon.

Food trucks have evolved from the wagons of decades past that pulled up at lunch time outside factories and other work sites, offering a hot dog and a bag of potato chips with a soft drink. They now offer fine cuisine, attracting a diverse clientele of foodies, office workers and others who celebrate the proliferation of the trucks.

Find the entire article by Luci Scott at <here>